The Forkhead Transcription Factor Hcm1 Promotes Mitochondrial Biogenesis and Stress Resistance in Yeast
Reverter Branchat, Gemma
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In Saccharomyces cerevisiae, the forkhead transcription factor Hcm1 is involved in chromosome segregation, spindle pole dynamics, and budding. We found that Hcm1 interacts with the histone deacetylase Sir2 and shifts from cytoplasm to the nucleus in the G1/S phase or in response to oxidative stress stimuli. The nuclear localization of Hcm1 depends on the activity of Sir2 as revealed by activators and inhibitors of the sirtuins and the sir2 mutant. Hcm1-overexpressing cells display more mitochondria that can be attributed to increased amounts of Abf2, a protein involved in mitochondrial biogenesis. These cells also show higher rates of oxygen consumption and improved resistance to oxidative stress that would be explained by increased catalase and Sod2 activities and molecular chaperones such as Hsp26, Hsp30, and members of Hsp70 family. Microarray analyses also reveal increased expression of genes involved in mitochondrial energy pathways and those allowing the transition from the exponential to the stationary phase. Taken together, these results describe a new and relevant role of Hcm1 for mitochondrial functions, suggesting that this transcription factor would participate in the adaptation of cells from fermentative to respiratory metabolism.